Photo Friday

Photo Friday – Pumpkin Patch 2014

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On Sunday we made our annual trek to the pumpkin patch at Serres Farm. It was a beautiful, warm, sunny day; the boys wore shorts and rubber boots. Will was really focused on finding small pumpkins and gourds. Every two steps he would find the next perfect one. Jack decided he wanted a tall pumpkin this year. I can’t wait to see what they decide to carve on them.

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Last Days of Summer

summer in seattle.jpgWith one week left until school starts we are trying to enjoy the last bit of summer. The weather has been beautiful this year, so it has been pretty easy.

Our summer was so front-loaded this year with trips it feels like summer has been really long. It was been so great to be home to enjoy the beautiful weather and friends.

Yesterday we went back to school shopping, since Will really needed new shoes. School supplies have been purchased, checked, organized and bagged up.

On Friday we find out teachers. Tuesday we go meet the teachers and drop of supplies, then everything starts on Wednesday.

Are you enjoying the last bit of summer or has school already started for you?

Super Sounders

Family Sounders game.jpgLast fall we took the family to a Seattle Sounders FC game, the local Major League Soccer team. Our seats were way up in the third deck and Will was unable to see the game.

At halftime Jim found some seats on the lower level that were not occupied and asked an usher if we could sit there, letting him know we had a vision impaired child. They gladly let us sit there and Will was able to see the game much better. The boys really enjoyed the seats and the game from that perspective.

The Sounders have been a marketing machine, drawing averaging more than 40,000 fans per game – more than twice the fans than the team with the second highest attendance. And they have done all this in only five years of existence. The games are fun and family friendly, with activities for kids before the game around the stadium. They run soccer camps throughout the region that kids love and are attended by members of the team. They even take time to sign all of the kids’ camp shirts.

After that game we decided to get a partial season ticket package for this season provided we could get seats that would work for Will. The Sounders not only found seats on the lower level, they offered us front row tickets for a significantly discounted price – all without asking for proof of disability. We didn’t feel it was right to take front row seats so we found great ones behind one of the goals elevated above the field for easy viewing (even when the fans stand, which they do for the entire game).

A few Saturdays ago we had our first game of the season and the seats were perfect. We are behind the goal where the Sounders are on offense in the first half and Will was able to see his favorite player, Obafemi Martins, score the first goal right in front of us. We love the way he says Obafemi’s name.

Up until now we hadn’t really thought about asking for seats to help him see at events. He is just now really starting to watch games. We learned through this process that if you don’t ask you will never get what you need. So we will continue to speak up and advocate for him and the Sounders proved, once again, why they are a world class organization by which other franchises will model their businesses. We are lucky to have them as a part of our community.

Scarves up to you, Sounders!

May 2014 Sounders game.jpg

Happy Birthday Islay

Islay 1st birthday.jpgToday is Islay’s 1st birthday. We have had quite a ride with her since bringing her home in July. Islay is living up to many of her breed qualities as well as her own sweet personality. We love her very much and couldn’t imagine our family without her.

In honor of her birthday here are some things that describe her.

I – interested. She is always interested in what you are doing. If you are digging in the back yard she is pretty much standing in the hole or if I am putting things away in the house she is my shadow.

S – silly. Between her silly tail, her funny Swissy expressions or when she decides to rip around the room, she is very silly. The boys love to watch her and laugh.

L – long and large. I knew how big she would get, but didn’t really comprehend how long she would be, both her body and her tail. She has no idea how big she is. All dogs look little now compared to her.

A –affectionate. Islay loves you with her whole body, whether it is with her head in your lap or her butt on your feet. She wants you to know she loves you.

Y – youthful energy. She has amazing energy and really enjoys being in the yard with all of us.

Happy Birthday Islay girl! Hopefully this is the first of many we get to celebrate with you.


Seahawks Victory Celebration

We were lucky enough to be given tickets to the Seahawks victory celebration by Jim’s boss. (Thanks Jaime!) It was a chilly, long day, but one we all will never forget.

Before bed each of us shared our favorite moments.

Will – Seeing Marshawn Lynch. The blue and green flying things (confetti)

Jack – Seeing Sydney Rice and that he is recovering. Watching the season recap.

Sarah – Walter Jones raising the 12th man flag.

Jim – Fireworks and blue and green confetti. Seahawks/12th man Boeing 747 fly over.

Here are some of my photos from our day.

crossing bridge.jpg
Driving over the I90 bridge at 7:30 am

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Family selfi before we headed out of the car into the cold

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Waiting in line to get into the Clink for the celebration

Crowd waiting to get into stadium

View from our seats with 12 in windows of building outside the stadium

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Waiting patiently for the celebration to begin

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Isn’t that a great sign

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12th man flag above the stadium

2nd Ave.jpg
View from stadium down 2nd Avenue where the parade will come in

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My super Seahawks fans!

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It is almost celebration time.

Super Bowl Champion Seahawk team


What a day!

My Mom’s Stew

mom.jpgMy friend and I were chatting the other day about the meals that our mothers would make when we were children. Some were delicious and others not as good.

One of my mom’s specialties and request when we would come home from college was her stew. It is hearty, warm, delicious and feels like home. The smell would fill the house, since she would start it in the afternoon, so it would simmer to perfection. It is such a rich, meaty smell with just enough wine. We always had it with cornbread, that would provide just a bit of a sweet smell. The perfect combo.

Any time I make or smell stew I think of my mom. It is one of those perfect fall or winter dinners for a cold stormy night. She has taught me her simple, but perfect recipe and I happily make it when we are craving something to warm us to our bones.

I made stew on Sunday evening for the NFC championship game. It may have been a bit of an ode to my mom since we were rooting for opposite sides, her the 49ers and me the Seahawks. We couldn’t enjoy it together, but it made me feel like we were together. It was a wonderful taste of home and my mom.

Photo Friday

2013 tree farm.jpg

On Sunday we made our annual trek to the Scott and Keith Tree Farm to pick out the perfect Christmas tree. In true DeNike style we walked the whole farm twice before deciding to take a tree from the owner’s yard. It is a beautiful tree that looks perfect in the living room.

Doubling Our Beds

Back in September I wrote about how we were in the midst of bed transitions. We had ordered the boys bunk beds and were waiting for them. In the interim we were all sleeping on the floor.

Jim’s and my stint on the floor only lasted a few weeks. We are loving the new king bed and getting used to the rearrangement of our furniture.

The boys bunk beds arrived two weeks ago and they are loving it. They were built by Ben from Vertical Bunk Beds on Bainbridge Island. He even delivered and set them up. We are so please with the quality and design. Jack now has three beds in his room, a twin over full plus a trundle. Will gets the extra long twin over a queen.

Jacks bunk bed 1.jpg

Jacks bunk bed 2.jpg

Wills bunk bed.jpg

They have traded off sleeping in the bottom and top bunks. I have told them that I only change one set of sheets a week, so choose wisely.

We have doubled the number of real beds in our house from three to six and are ready to host my sister’s family at Christmas time. Everyone will have a bed!

If anyone is up for a sleep over let us know, we can now host.

Family-Themed Costume?

family.jpgAre you one of those families that don a family-themed Halloween costume? You are probably guessing that we are, but we aren’t.

We all dressed up in a themed costume one year, but that was it. I have themed the boys before, but now that they are old enough to have a say that ship has sailed. I do try to have the dog in a theme with at least one of the boys, but it isn’t working this year. Hopefully Islay will tolerate the Halloween costume as well as Mulligan did.

If you are doing the family-themed costume this year, hats off to you. Especially if that means that you got your children to agree on a theme. I would love to see your photos, so please post them in comments.

Happy Halloween and have a safe evening.

Photo Friday

Photo Friday – Pumpkin Patch 2013

pumpkin patch 2013 family.jpg

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 pumpkin patch 2013 6.jpg   pumpkin patch 2013 1.jpg

 pumpkin patch 2013 2.jpg   pumpkin patch 2013 3.jpg

Last weekend we made our annual pumpkin patch trip and Islay got to make her first trip. It was foggy, but not raining. We went to a great farm in Redmond called Serres Farm. They had a fun corn maze too.

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